What is organizational culture? How powerful can it be? Think about trying to change organizational culture and how difficult it would be, and the effects it will have on a business. According to, Richard Hagberg, Ph.D. HCG, and Julie HeifetzPh.D. HCG (Corporate Culture 2000) understanding and assessing your organization's culture can mean the difference between success and failure in today's fast changing business environment. They also state that what management pays attention to and rewards is often the strongest indicator of the organization's culture.
According to Toolpack Consulting, LLC, (Organizational Culture 2003) Organizational culture can be loosely defined as the shared assumptions, beliefs, and "normal behaviors"" of a group. They also say these are powerful influences on the way people live and act, and they define what is "normal"" and how to sanction those who are not "normal. " To a large degree what we do is determined by our culture. Hagberg, and Heifetz (2000) state that culture is not the espoused list of values developed at an offsite by the executive team and framed on the wall in your lobby, they are ideas that you believe in and what you strive for and the may not be the same as what you actually practice everyday. Organizational culture is very similar to regional culture, because the same person in different organizations would act in different ways. Culture is very powerful, many companies have gone from bankruptcy into prosperity by changing their own culture, such as from being rude and obnoxious to being the most polite people you have every met. Changing culture is not an easy thing to be done but it is possible and companies willing to change can come back from total failure to being stars. According Hagberg and Heifetz (2000) the culture of an organization operates at both a conscious and unconscious level. Most people that see your culture clearly are those from outside of the organization, but you have to remember that culture comprises the deeply rooted, but often unconscious beliefs, values and norms shared by the members of the organization.